I Kissed a Girl
- Author: Jennet Alexander
- Genre: Romance
- Publication Date: August 3, 2021
- Publisher: Dreamscape Media, LLC
CONTENT WARNING: stalking
Is a happy ending finally in sight for Hollywood’s favorite scream queen?
Lilah Silver is a young actress who dreams of climbing out of B-list stardom. She’s been cast as the lead in what could be her breakout performance … but if she wants to prove herself to everyone who ever doubted her, she’s going to need major help along the way.
Noa Birnbaum may be a brilliant makeup artist and special effects genius, but cracking into the union is more difficult than she imagined. Keeping everyone happy is a full-time job, and she’s already run ragged. Yet when the beautiful horror star she’s been secretly crushing on admits to fears of her own, Noa vows to do everything in her power to help Lilah shine like never before.
Long hours? Exhausting work? No problem. Together, they can take the world by storm … but can the connection forged over long hours in the makeup chair ever hope to survive the glare of the spotlight?
As the second book in my Hanukkah readathon, this one filled the “book published in 2021” prompt. And while it was kind of on my radar, I can completely thank this readathon for bumping this up to the top of my TBR. I got the print book, but ended up listening to the audiobook, and it turned out to be narrated by one of my favorite narrators, Natalie Naudus. She did such a great job with this funny story, bringing the awkward, silly, and outright funny characters to life.
I truly enjoyed getting to know both Noa and Lilah, especially since they were so different. They’ve got different upbringings, different goals and paths in life, different friend groups, and completely different tastes in everything. But they clicked right away, and even though it wasn’t a smooth road, they were willing to slowly let down their barriers and get to know each other over the course of the book. I loved watching them get to know each other and slowly get closer.
There was a good amount of Jewish representation in the story, since both characters were Jewish, and somewhat connected to their religions. It was one of the first thing that they bonded over, and the fact that their names aren’t overtly Jewish, but are a way to connect. Noa is a common girls name in Israel, and Lilah is a Hebrew word that translates to night. It was so beautiful to see this representation, and to be able to see myself in that little surge of connection you get when you meet another Jewish person, no matter where you are, especially when you least expect to find another person who shares your culture and religion. There was even a little humor worked into this, when they celebrate Shavuot together, which is a holiday that is traditionally celebrated by eating dairy foods. It definitely got a little chuckle out of me:
“‘For a people so prone to lactose intolerance, there’s irony in having a holiday celebrated with dairy desserts.’”
Noa is openly gay, while Lilah isn’t as open about her bisexuality. She also struggles a little with her identity, and it’s one of her internal struggles throughout the story. There was a trans character included in the story, and I enjoyed Lilah’s misguided efforts to try to respect someone’s pronouns. I loved how Lilah’s issue with resolving her feelings about her sexuality is addressed, especially when this comes up in conversation:
“‘But as soon as she found out I also dated guys, she couldn’t get out of there fast enough. I guess being half-gay isn’t enough.’
Noa pulled a face. ‘Okay, no, that’s awful. You’re not half-gay. That’s not how it works. That’s not how any of it works.’”
There’s also another subplot in the story, which added a little extra tension, even though I figured out who the person behind it was long before it was revealed. I just didn’t reveal the length they would go to, and was actually pretty shocked at how that storyline worked out. Overall, this was a great story, and I laughed so much while reading it. I fell in love with the story so early into it, and could tell by the second chapter that I was already going to love it, and I was right. I’m definitely going to be keeping an eye out for any and all new books coming out from Jennet Alexander in the future.
Categories: Book Review